20 Ways to Give Back as a Family This Summer


Summer vacation has arrived, yasss!!!! For most families, summer means ice cream cones, frequent visits to the park, splashing in the pool, and family vacay. Beyond these favorite past-times, what better season than to give back with the kids?

20 Ways to Give Back as a Family This Summer

1. Spend a morning cleaning up a park.

2. Flying Horse Farms needs volunteers to give seriously ill children a camp experience they’ll never forget. flyinghorsefarms.org

3. Build a kitchen table and chairs at the Furniture Bank of Central Ohio so parents and kids have a gathering place for the breakfast, lunch and family dinners. furniturebankcoh.org

4. Put fresh fruits and veggies on a families’ table. During summer months, the Broad Street Food Pantry holds a farmers’ market-style event to distribute fresh produce from the Mid-Ohio Foodbank. Volunteers are there to set up and break down tables and help clients as they shop. bspc.org 

5. Make a shelter dog wag it’s tail with excitement. As a volunteer, you will be walking and feeding dogs to cleaning kitty litter. cahs-pets.org

6. Put together a care package for someone that needs an extra dose of love.

7. Sort through old toys, clothes and books and donate them to a shelter or children’s hospital.

8. Walk, run or bike as a family for a local charity.

9. Set up a lemonade stand to raise money for an important cause.

10. Visit a senior center to play games with the residents.

11. Volunteer in the Kroger Food Pantry at the Mid-Ohio Foodbank or the Dublin Food Pantry. idohiofoodbank.org or dublinfoodpantry.org

12. Multiple volunteer opportunities are available at Ronald McDonald House. From baking, cooking a meal, being a house warmer, to a blanket volunteer. rmhc-centralohio.org

13. Buy school supplies and a backpack for other kids through local back to school drives.

14. Like golf? Spend time sharing the game’s athletic and social benefits (emphasis on fun!) with children or adults with disabilities. forehope.org

15. Play a role in healing the ailing at Chalmers P. Wylie VA Ambulatory Care Center. Greeters, receptionists and assistants are needed throughout the facility. columbus.va.gov

16. FOCUS Summer Feeding Program provides meals for disadvantaged youth who are fed by the public school system during the school year. focusnorthamerica.org

17. Take kids on an adventure. The mission at A Kid Again is simple: “To foster hope, happiness and healing for families raising kids with life-threatening illnesses.” Lend a hand on one of the activities the organization hosts every year. Excursions include a day at King’s Island and a “dream night” at the zoo. akidagain.org

19. Make a home-cooked meal for individuals who can’t go home. Unverferth House provides temporary housing to families from outside Franklin County whose loved ones are hospitalized at OSU Wexner Medical Center. Volunteers cook meals for families and help around the house. unverferthhouse.org

20. Create your own event for #hashtag lunchbox on a local level. There are currently no events in our area. The movement involves creating bagged lunches, complete with love messages, to spread love and share your experiences to inspire others. hashtaglunchbag.org 

What activities do you enjoy doing to give back to the Columbus community?

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Leslie came to Columbus 2 yrs ago via San Antonio, TX. A Kentucky native that bleeds neither red (Louisville Cardinals) nor blue (Kentucky Wildcats). She is a SAHM, homeschooler and Occupational Therapist (OTR/L) by weekend. Leslie and her husband have two boys, ages 6 and 2, and they love discovering new Columbus parks and restaurants! She proudly embraces the title of "boy mom", even when that means knowing more than she would care to know about dinosaurs. Her everyday wardrobe consists of mainly Nike Dri-Fit and sneakers. Leslie lives for her Burt's Bees lip balm and a good ole top knot bun. You can always find pull-ups, wipes, hand sanitizer, and Welch's fruit snacks in her designer handbag. She loves her family, fashion, interior design, working out, being a soccer mom, renovating the families 1962 ranch with her husband, and making a difference in her patients' lives. She recently became an advocate and volunteer for the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. It is her hope to bring awareness and help raise funds, for a cause that is near and dear to her heart. She is also the owner and founder of The Penmanship Lab.